"The Man Who Defied God" by Winged Productions at St. Michael's Episcopal


BRATTLEBORO >> Winged Productions presents "The Man Who Defied God" on Saturday, March 19 at 7 p.m. and on Sunday March 20 at 3 p.m., the premier of Composer Paul Dedell's latest musical mystery play, "The Man Who Defied God," with musical direction by Susan Dedell, The Choir School, and guest violinist Moby Pearson, The musical tells the complicated and rich story of the prophet Jonah with humor, pathos, and insight. Both performances take place at St. Michael's Episcopal Church, Brattleboro.

"The Man Who Defied God" is the third in a series of original mystery (miracle) plays written by Dedell, and tells the complex story of the prophet Jonah. Paul wrote this production for The Choir School, which is a choral program for young people directed by his wife, Susan.

"Susan and I have embarked upon creating a series of modern mystery plays, which are contemporary musical productions based on the model of the medieval miracle plays. This is our third original production, and we are excited to be locally reviving this wonderful theatrical tradition.

The possibility with these plays for creativity and collaboration with different organizations is endless!"

Although the story of Jonah is set in the ancient Middle East during a time of conflict between the Jews and the Assyrians, the political and social conflict that is at the heart of the story is startlingly contemporary. Jonah, an ordinary Jew, was commanded by God to bring a message of mercy and forgiveness to the enemy Assyrians in order to prevent them from ultimate destruction. Jonah runs away because he cannot bring himself to extend compassion to a people he hates and who hate him. "The Man Who Defied God" follows Jonah on his journey through stormy seas, the belly of the whale, the fiery heat of the desert; witnesses his encounter with giant plants and devouring worms; and witnesses his struggle as he wrestles with God's mandate to show love for those unlike him.

Paul's first original theatrical score won the prestigious Marshall award in 1979. His scores for theater have been heard locally in numerous productions at Sandglass Theater and Marlboro College. He received the Alfred Nash Patterson award for his choral score, Come Life, Shaker Life, and recently received a commission from the Vermont Symphony Orchestra. Along with his wife, Susan, he is co-founder/director of Winged Productions.

Beginning its third year, The Choir School is the latest of choral initiatives in Susan Dedell's career. The Choir School is dedicated to providing young people with vocal and musical skills and introducing them to the joy of choral singing. Due to its success and growth, The Choir School added an introductory level program for younger children this year. Susan is also the director of the Brattleboro Concert Choir.

Suggested donation for The Man Who Defied God is $10/6. For more information: wingedproductions@gmail.com; or (802) 254-6048.


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